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Slip and Fall Accidents in the Winter Months

Posted January 1, 2018

New Jersey has already been hit extremely hard by snow and frigid temperatures this year, first with a “bomb cyclone” that dumped up to 18 inches of snow in some areas, and later an “arctic outbreak” that left the east coast between 20 and 30 degree colder than normal, according to the Washington Post. A record storm surge has caused havoc and deaths in on the eastern seaboard due to the cyclone. With extremely cold temperatures and heavy snow accumulation, the risk of slip and fall accidents is at an all-time high. While many falls lead only to feelings of embarrassment, or minor scrapes and bruises, other falls can cause serious and permanent injuries.

Who is Liable?

Sidewalks during winter storms are virtually impossible to keep clear of snow and ice. If you slipped while it was still snowing, it could prove difficult to find any party liable for your damages. However, if you slipped on ice or snow after the storm dissipated and there was a reasonable amount of time for the responsible party to clear the sidewalk, there may be grounds for a personal injury claim or lawsuit. Businesses are responsible for clearing certain sidewalks and parking lots, cities and counties may be responsible for some sidewalks, and even privately owned condominiums and 55-and-over living homeowners associations may be found negligent for failing to keep their sidewalks safe for residents and visitors.

How Did the Fall Happen?

Generally, you can only hold another party responsible for your slip and fall when you were acting in a careful and prudent manner. As such, if you fell while intoxicated or running when the sidewalk was obviously hazardous, you may have a more difficult time procuring damages. After a fall, you need to take immediate action to preserve evidence. Seek medical attention and, if possible, take photographs of the sidewalk, get witness statements, and report the fall to the property owner. If you do not know who the property owner is, or who should be held liable, your attorney can help figure that out.

Take Action Quickly to Ensure Your Damages are Compensated

Compensation for a serious slip and fall injury may include payment for your medical costs, pain and suffering, lost wages from time off work, property damage, and much more. We encourage you to take action now while your memory and the incident are fresh. Call our Red Bank personal injury attorneys with Foss, San Filippo & Milne, LLC. today at (732) 741-2525.